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Robert E. Lee Statue Removed From U.S. Capitol

Civil rights icon Barbara Rose Johns will replace the statue of the Confederate general that's been in the U.S. Capitol for 111 years.
Posted at 1:14 PM, Dec 21, 2020

A statue of Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee was removed from the U.S. Capitol Monday morning.

The statue has represented the state of Virginia for the last 111 years. However, Gov. Ralph Northam requested it be removed and a state commission decided that Lee was not a fitting symbol for the state.

Northam said: "The Confederacy is a symbol of Virginia's racist and divisive history, and it is past time we tell our story with images of perseverance, diversity, and inclusion."

Last week, the state commission recommended civil rights icon Barbara Rose Johns replace the statue of Lee. 

In 1951 – at 16 years old – Johns defied segregation in her school. 

Her actions, in part, led to the Supreme Court's landmark ruling in Brown v. Board of Education. 

Additional reporting by The Associated Press.